Why having a flat hierarchy was the key to rtCamp becoming Asia’s only WordPress.com VIP agency?
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Let us get the common question about Asia’s first WordPress.com VIP agency out of the way. What does rtCamp stand for?
RT, as the founder Rahul Bansal himself explained to us, stands for ‘Round Table’ after King Arthur’s famed table in the Arthurian Legend. Camp, refers to the whole circuit of bar/blog/php camps in which, Bansal, as a successful WordPress freelancer, actively participated.
Two factors influenced the name and the culture at rtCamp. One factor Bansal says was his “hunger for equality”- the desire that everyone must have a say and contribute by taking initiative instead of just taking orders. The other factor was the unencumbered, open-source loving, community-driven culture around WordPress; which was represented by bar camps and so on, which he had come to appreciate.
These values he says got reflected in their work culture and while he adds that such core values cannot be altered according to the balance sheet, he can also trace the foundation of rtCamp’s growth to these values.
At rtCamp, their core values, have resulted in them building an agency where they love open-source, contribute back to the WordPress community, share the spotlight, and celebrate the contributions as well as exits of their team members.
A reflection of this is Bansal’s description of how, the now VIP partner WordPress agency, landed their first big client; when they were much smaller and younger.
Bansal is quick to attribute credit to the then Marketing Head, Gajanan Sapate; who is no longer with rtCamp and has started his own social media agency, SocialChamps. Sapate had approached Bansal with the idea of creating a company profile on LinkedIn- a popular professional social networking platform. Bansal, admittedly, was not too keen on the idea. Sapate made the choice to create the company profile on LinkedIn without his approval Bansal recollects, appreciatively.
When the ‘big client’- Geometric, went searching on LinkedIn, rtCamp had an advantage, as they were probably the only company to be listed as a WordPress agency in India at the time; around 2012.
This is only one example of how Bansal, and rtCamp set up a platform for many to take initiative and grow. Many of them have left the agency to carry on to big projects while continuing to make contributions to the WordPress community.
If you need an example of the extent to which rtCamp’s contributions to WP core has had an impact, you only need to look at the citation they received when becoming WordPress.com VIP partners. It was consistent contributions to WordPress Core which was mentioned as the main reason for being chosen as Asia’s first WordPress.com VIP partner agency.
Another aspect of the agency that Rahul takes pride in, is the involvement of rtCampers in the WordPress community itself- participation in WordCamps and publishing of tutorials. He says that the company encourages team members to make such contributions.
The culture of sharing the spotlight and getting better at one’s job, while contributing back to the community in combination have produced a team which today boasts of only enterprise clients or funded clients. While rtCamp was not born as an enterprise level WordPress agency, the core values as described by Bansal certainly seem to reflect in the work and now in the client base the agency has developed over the years.
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